The major New York outpost of D.C.'s job-cutting, budget-slashing, donation-losing Smithsonian Institution
, the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum
, has just received a major ($600,000) donation from the Rockefeller Foundation to help develop its landmark 2007 exhibition Design for the Other 90%
into a recurring series. It's telling that an underfunded museum dedicated to a discipline often considered the sole province of the extremely wealthy is receiving support to address affordable and sustainable design.
The Cooper-Hewitt has always had a strong inclination towards socially responsible design (like the recent Design for a Living World show), and hopefully this donation will push them further in that direction. According to Artdaily, the first exhibition produced under the new program, Critical Mass, will open in the fall of 2011 and look at the ways that design in underprivileged regions intersects with various disciplines from urban planning to climate change and international development.